Most people know there are twelve animal signs in Chinese astrology: the Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Sheep, Monkey, Rooster, Dog and Boar.
There are also five elements, corresponding to different ener- gies in Chinese astrology and Feng Shui. These five elements are used to figure out anything from your birth chart to the siting of a house. At this point we’ve discussed using these elements and their associated cures to boost and harmonize the energy of each aspiration of the Bagua and its corresponding area in the home.
These five elements represent the kind of Chi that exists throughout the environment and that works in tandem with the yin and yang qualities and the Bagua energies. As I suggested in the previous chapter, you should use fire cures in the south area of your house because that is where the fire energy is naturally at home. Each of the five elements corresponds to one of the areas of the Bagua. This elemental system is based on the Chinese cycle of creation and destruction.
The creation cycle of the Five Elements
According to the Chinese creation cycle, wood can be burned to create fire. Fire burns down to ashes, which create earth. Metal is created within the earth, which creates water, which allows trees to grow and thus creates wood.
Note: Wood creates fire, fire creates earth, earth creates metal, metal creates water, and water creates wood.
The destruction cycle of the Five Elements
According to the Chinese destruction cycle, wood uses earth to grow, and earth pollutes water. Water douses fire, and fire melts metal, but metal can cut and destroy wood.
Note: Wood destroys earth, earth destroys water, water destroys fire, fire destroys metal, and metal destroys wood. So, for exam- ple, because metal destroys wood, metal and wood are not compatible.
Using the Five Elements to cure/enhance your place with Feng Shui principles
When we use cures or enhancements in the home, they have to be compatible with the element that we are treating. For example, if we are working on a wood area, we reinforce it with water cures because water encourages the wood energy, but we wouldn’t use water cures to reinforce a fire area, as this would only put out the flames!
The five elements form a cycle of energy that needs to be har- monized in your environment. For example, if you want to boost the fire sector of your home, you can draw on the other two ele- ments that complement fire, wood and earth. Just don’t overload the areas of the home where the energy is naturally resonating with that element. In other words, don’t overload the fire corner of your home with too many fire cures; add a little wood and earth to complement and boost the natural fire energy instead.
Elements That Complement Each Other
- Fire can benefit from wood and earth cures.
- Earth can benefit from metal and fire cures.
- Metal can benefit from water and earth cures.
- Water can benefit from wood and metal cures.
- Wood can benefit from fire and water cures.
The Elements and Their Cures
The following sections describe how you can use the elements to cure an area of your home that needs to be brought into balance.
The Element of Fire
Here are some examples of fire cures:
- Red or orange paint
- Red light bulbs (for the brave)
- A picture of a phoenix
- Real fires
- Fireworks images
- Illustrations of battleships
- Illustrations of bonfires
- Red glassware
The Element of Wood
Here are some examples of wood cures:
- Wooden sculpture
- Green things
- Pictures of spring meadows
- Olive green
- Gnarled wood
- Oil paintings
- Dried seedpods
The Element of Earth
Here are some examples of earth cures:
- Rock crystal
- Yellow objects
- Brown items
- Terra cotta colors
- Glass ornaments and jars
The Element of Water
Here are some examples of water cures:
- Fish tank
- Dark blue and black items
- Illustrations of rivers
- Stones and rocks from the sea
- The colors violet and purple
- Sea paintings
- Pictures of pirates
- Illustrations of shipwrecks
- Pictures of ships
- Pictures of boats
- Images of cliffs and waves
The Element of Metal
Here are some examples of metal cures:
- Gold leaf
- Gold paint
- Stainless steel
- Wrought iron
- White metal objects
- Photography, black-and-white images
- Gilt frames
- Brass rubbings
- Silver threads
- Gold-colored fabric
- White lilies